Friday, October 28, 2022

Home Maintenance

After renting for 15 years and now owning property for nearly 20 years, it is amazing how much one can learn just through osmosis regarding home ownership.  As with any physical good, nothing lasts forever and repairs are part of the process.

Periodic Maintenance
  • HVAC Service - Spring & Fall
  • Change Filters - Per Furnace Guidelines
  • Wooden Deck - 1-3 years refinishing
Lawn Maintenance
  • Cut Grass
  • Trim Bushes
  • Aerate
  • Fertilize & Weed Treatment
  • Sprinkler start up and blow out
Big Items
  • Roof - 15-20 years
  • Paint - Interior/Exterior - 5-10 years
  • Fence - 10-15 years
  • Windows - 15-20 years
  • Water Heater - 10 years
  • Furnace - 10-15 years
  • Air Conditioner - 10-15 years
  • Appliances - Fridge, Oven, Dishwasher, Microwave - 10-15 years
Professional Support
  • Handyman
  • HVAC
  • Plumber
  • Electrician
  • Lawn Service
  • General Contractor
  • Screwdriver Set
  • Hammer
  • Drill & Bits
  • Open end wrenches, Adjustable Wrench
  • Pliers
  • Allen Keys
  • Duct Tape
  • Electrical Tape
  • Level
  • Tape Measure
  • Lawn Mower
  • Trimmer
  • Blower
  • Garden shears 
Moving into a new house is overwhelming and the first time something breaks it feels like a huge burden.

There is not much periodic maintenance and developing a relationship with an HVAC guy is a good idea.  It is kind of like getting an oil change for your car.

Budget for big items.  You will know when these are coming up based on new build, your inspection or just living in the house for a while.

Professional Support is vital.  Ask your neighbors and colleagues for recommendations.  We use a handyman for all kinds of jobs like installing fans, easy carpentry, assembling furniture, etc. at least twice/year.  HVAC, plumber, electrician are less common, but one of them will come by the house once/year.  Lawn service should be secured for fertilize and weed treatment even if you do everything else yourself.  General Contractor is for remodels.  They will coordinate everybody if you redo kitchen, baths, basement, etc.

Learning to fix stuff yourself is great.  You can save a lot of time, money and frustration by taking care of big and small jobs.  You should have some basic tools so that you are not constantly borrowing stuff from your neighbors.  It is easy to rent tools and and materials needed are easily found at Lowes or Home Depot.  You will slowly accumulate a small wood pile and extra screws, bolts, nails, and other materials as you go.  I would recommend labeling and zip locking odds and ends from furniture, appliances, etc.  I do not like working on plumbing or electrical items, but I can unclog a sink and replace light fixtures.  Beyond that, I stick to landscaping (where the stakes are low if something fails) and garage organization (where finishing poorly is not the end of the world).

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